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Kyrie Irving: Potential trades for every team

Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Shams Charania broke the internet Friday when he reported that Kyrie Irving requested a trade out of Brooklyn just six days ahead of the February 9 deadline.

He reported that Irving couldn’t get a long-term deal done and that the Nets offered him a big contract … with stipulations. Apparently, Irving wasn’t too keen on the offer, and he’s ready to move on from Brooklyn. Which teams will pursue him? Shams mentions three of the most likely trade partners:

But, what about the other 26 teams not mentioned above? Would the Bucks or Heat be willing to take a swing on such a mercurial player? Would the Knicks take another huge swing on a star talent who’s suddenly available? Would rebuilding franchises like Orlando, Oklahoma City or Houston be willing to sell the farm?

The Nets will be looking out for their best interest, so they’ll presumably take the best deal they can get, regardless of Irving’s preferences. Irving has plenty of leverage, though. Any team that wants to trade for him is surely going to ask for a long-term commitment, and if he doesn’t agree, the Nets lose a trade partner. Irving’s preferred list of teams will surely be considered.

According to Spotrac, the teams with the most projected salary cap heading into next season are the Rockets, Pacers, Pistons, Spurs, Thunder, Magic, Hornets and Jazz. These aren’t the only teams who could navigate the financials and make this deal work, but they have the advantage of cap space.

I went through all 29 teams and worked out potential trade scenarios for Irving (with the help of Fanspo’s NBA Trade Machine) and in some cases determined that the team wouldn’t be interested in trading for him at all. Keep in mind that these trades are all underpinned by the notion that wherever Irving is traded will receive a long-term commitment from him. Teams like San Antonio could trade for him, but would he want to spend the twilight of his career with the Spurs?

No matter where he ends up, one thing is for sure. This is going to be an exciting deadline day. Buckle up!

Atlanta Hawks: Not a trade partner

The Hawks got Trae Young a running mate in Dejounte Murray, so there’s no need to pursue Irving.

Boston Celtics: Not a trade partner

Been there, done that.

Charlotte Hornets

CHA receives: Kyrie Irving, Joe Harris

BKN receives Gordon Hayward, Mason Plumlee, Kelly Oubre, P.J. Washington, 2023, 2025 FRP

The Hornets have the money to offer Irving a lucrative long-term deal. If they could unload some expiring contracts and Hayward’s remaining $60 million, they would have to think long and hard about adding a pair of FRPs in order to build an Irving-LaMelo Ball backcourt, right? This move would allow Mark Williams to presumably slide into the Hornets’ starting center role, much to the delight of fantasy managers.

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Chicago Bulls

CHI receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Alex Caruso, Lonzo Ball, Patrick Williams

Would the Bulls be interested in building a Big 3 with Zach LaVine, DeMar DeRozan and Irving? Chicago has been mediocre all season, and maybe the team believes it’s just one move away from contending. The Nets would land some solid defenders in Caruso and Williams and take a swing on Ball’s upside despite his inability to stay healthy.

Cleveland Cavaliers: Not a trade partner

Just like Atlanta, the Cavs shored up their backcourt in the offseason. They have no need for Irving.

Dallas Mavericks

DAL receives: Kyrie Irving, Patty Mills

BKN receives: Tim Hardaway Jr., Spencer Dinwiddie, 2024 FRP

The Mavs were interested in him before, so Dallas will surely try to land Irving this time around. How much are they willing to give up? If there’s a sense that he’ll stick around after this season, the team could offer THJ, Dinwiddie and a future first, though maybe Dallas offers even more to finally get Luka Dončić the running mate he’s so desperately needed over the years. Dinwiddie could be reunited with his former team in the process.

Denver Nuggets

DEN receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Aaron Gordon, 2024 FRP

The Nuggets are rolling so this one feels farfetched, but if Denver did make a run at Irving, they might offer KCP and Gordon, who’s having the best season of his career. A FRP would only sweeten the deal. Would a Big 3 of Jamal Murray, Nikola Jokić and Irving put this team over the top in the Western Conference?

Detroit Pistons

DET receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Saddiq Bey, Marvin Bagley, Killian Hayes, Alec Burks

The Pistons could clear up a bit of a logjam at guard and move Hayes, allowing Irving to start alongside Cade Cunningham and Ivey to operate as a Sixth Man. Adding young players like Bey and Bagley might be enticing to Brooklyn, who would get some help at point guard and at forward in the process. Detroit’s potential starting lineup of Cade, Irving, Bojan Bogdanović, Isaiah Stewart and Jalen Duren would be an entertaining one, for sure.

Golden State Warriors: Not a trade partner

The Warriors don’t need Irving or his shenanigans. They won’t be picking up the phone.

Houston Rockets

HOU receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Eric Gordon, Kevin Porter Jr., Jae’Sean Tate, 2023 FRP

Houston can put together one of the best packages for Irving, but they would only do this deal if he agrees to sign long-term. If he does commit, Houston can build around its core of Jalen Green, Alperen Şengün, Jabari Smith, Tari Eason and Irving. This would be a best-case scenario for Brooklyn, but the question is: would Houston take such a huge swing, or does the team prefer to build around its current roster and save its FRPs?

Indiana Pacers

IND receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Buddy Hield, Daniel Theis, Jalen Smith

The Pacers are always mentioned in the rumor mill, and after making a blockbuster Tyrese Haliburton-Domantas Sabonis swap at last season’s deadline, we’re not counting them out of making another big deal this season. If the Pacers can get Irving to agree to a long-term deal, they’d surely add more to this offer, but the starting point is good, and Irving could play off-ball next to Haliburton in a starting five that would likely include the recently-extended Myles Turner.

Los Angeles Clippers: Not a trade partner

The Clippers could get something done with Norman Powell, Robert Covington and a combination of other players, but the team has one of the weakest rosters in the NBA outside of its stars, so there’s not much to offer here. Financially, this one would be tough to make work long-term due to Kawhi Leonard‘s and Paul George‘s massive deals.

Los Angeles Lakers

LAL receives: Kyrie Irving, Patty Mills

BKN receives: Russell Westbrook, Thomas Bryant, Lonnie Walker IV, 2023, 2024 SRPs

The Lakers don’t have much to offer in the way of star power or picks, so a deal would be tricky, but if Irving prefers landing in LA, this might be able to work. An Irving-LeBron James reunion has been hinted at for some time, and after fleecing Washington to acquire Rui Hachimura, the Lakers’ new starting lineup would include Irving, James, Anthony Davis and Hachimura. That might be enough to get it done in the West, and we know James is all about winning now.

Memphis Grizzlies: Not a trade partner

Memphis is doing just fine as one of the West’s top teams, and trading for Kyrie doesn’t make much sense.

Miami Heat: Not a trade partner

Would Pat Riley and Erik Spoelstra really want to deal with Irving and the antics he brings with him? It seems unlikely.

Milwaukee Bucks: Not a trade partner

Just like Miami, the Bucks have built a winning culture and don’t need to add another star, especially one who comes with so many distractions.

Minnesota Timberwolves

MIN receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: D’Angelo Russell, Taurean Prince

This is another longshot since Minnesota is out of first-round picks, but if the Nets want to bring D’Lo back and tack on Taurean Prince‘s contract to make the financials work, it’s not out of the realm of possibility. We know Minnesota is willing to make a deal.

New Orleans Pelicans

NOP receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Garrett Temple, Devonte’ Graham, Jaxson Hayes, Trey Murphy III, Dyson Daniels

The Pels have one of the best starting fives in the NBA, but it could be even better with Irving in the mix. Would New Orleans be willing to give away young studs in Murphy III and Daniels and clear out much of its depth if it meant landing Kyrie to play alongside C.J. McCollum, Brandon Ingram, Zion Williamson and Jonas Valančiūnas? That would be the best starting lineup in the NBA, hands down. As of this writing, New Orleans has lost 10 straight, so maybe the front office pushes to get this one done.

New York Knicks

NYK receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Mitchell Robinson, Evan Fournier, 2023 FRPs

It’s always tricky to trade within a conference or division in sports, but trading one burrough to the next? That would be wild. The Knicks missed out on Donovan Mitchell last summer, so maybe adding Irving to play alongside Jalen Brunson, R.J. Barrett and Julius Randle is the move. This would be a big swing, but the Knicks have four FRPs in 2023, so they certainly have the capital to make this one work if they want to, and the team is always looking to make a splash.

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Oklahoma City Thunder

OKC receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Lu Dort, Aleksej Pokusevski, Darius Bazley, multiple FRPs

The Thunder don’t have many high-profile or high-dollar players, so this trade would be centered around the team’s treasure trove of FRPs. It’s up to the Thunder to decide if all those picks they’ve been hoarding are worth spending on Irving. Does he fit the vision of the future Sam Presti has, or will Oklahoma City continue to be patient and evaluate the roster after next season when Chet Holmgren is healthy?

Orlando Magic

ORL receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Markelle Fultz, Mo Bamba, Chuma Okeke, 2023 FRP

The Magic hit a homerun with their pick of Paolo Banchero at No. 1, and the future is bright for a core that features Banchero, Franz Wagner, Jonathan Isaac and Wendell Carter Jr. Adding a veteran star in Kyrie Irving could take Orlando to the next level, and giving up Fultz, Bamba, Okeke and a pick doesn’t seem like a big asking price.

Philadelphia 76ers: Not a trade partner

The Sixers are set at guard, and there’s no reason to entertain a trade for Irving.

Phoenix Suns

PHX receives: Kyrie Irving, Day’Ron Sharpe, Royce O’Neale

BKN receives: Deandre Ayton, Jae Crowder

To be honest, I had the Suns pegged as “Not a trade partner” before reading reports that Phoenix is a top option to land the disgruntled star. I’m a bit shocked that the Suns want to add Irving, but Phoenix has taken a nosedive since Devin Booker got injured, and the team could really use some backcourt help. Kyrie to the rescue… I guess?

A deal for Irving could center around Chris Paul, but then the Suns are just trading Paul’s passing for Irving’s scoring and giving up Paul’s tremendous leadership. That doesn’t make a lot of sense. Instead, Deandre Ayton gives his blessing to finally get out of Phoenix, Jae Crowder gets his long-awaited trade, and Irving comes to Phoenix to play alongside Booker and Paul in a three-guard starting lineup. The Nets experiment with point guards and use a combination of Edmond Sumner, Seth Curry and Cam Thomas while deploying a jumbo starting lineup that includes Ayton, breakout Nic Claxton and Kevin Durant. It seemed strange at first, but the more I think about it, this could be very, very interesting.

Portland Trail Blazers

POR receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Anfernee Simons, Josh Hart

The Blazers just signed Anfernee Simons to a big contract last offseason, but would they be willing to include Josh Hart in a deal to get an upgrade in the backcourt alongside Damian Lillard? This one seems like a longshot too, but maybe it’s time the Blazers make a big move and shake things up?

Sacramento Kings: Not a trade partner

The Kings are playing well this season after acquiring Domantas Sabonis last season and Kevin Huerter and Malik Monk in the offseason. It would be tough to make the financials work, and adding Irving doesn’t seem like it’s in the cards.

San Antonio Spurs

SAS receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Doug McDermott, Josh Richardson, Jakob Poeltl, 2023 FRP (Hornets), 2024 FRP

Poeltl has been mentioned in trade rumors for quite a while, and the Spurs can offer him to Brooklyn in a trade package that includes a pair of shooters and a pair of FRPs. San Antonio will have money to offer Irving a long-term deal, but does he want to play multiple years here in a rebuild? It seems unlikely.

Toronto Raptors

TOR receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Otto Porter, O.G. Anunoby, Chris Boucher

The Raptors have entertained trading Anunoby, and adding a floor-stretching big in Boucher and a versatile forward in OPJ would surely be an attractive deal for Brooklyn. Toronto is another team that has built a culture of winning through years of strong drafts and development, so chemistry and fit are obvious concerns.

Utah Jazz

UTA receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Mike Conley, Malik Beasley, multiple FRPs

The Jazz acquired a ton of FRPs last offseason by trading away Rudy Gobert and Donovan Mitchell, but is Irving who Danny Ainge had in mind as his star of the future? We know Ainge’s willingness to take big swings and make splashy moves, but is an Irving-Lauri Markkanen one-two punch the duo that makes Utah a true contender? Maybe that’s just the first step of his master plan, and if Ainge wants to get Irving, he certainly has the assets to do so.

Washington Wizards

WAS receives: Kyrie Irving

BKN receives: Will Barton, Monte Morris, Kyle Kuzma, 2025 FRP

Kuzma is another name that’s been mentioned quite frequently in recent trade rumors, so maybe Washington decides to deal him to Brooklyn and get a stronger backcourt partner for Bradley Beal. A Kuzma trade would open up plenty more playing time for Deni Avdija, and Daniel Gafford and Kristaps Porzingis would surely get bumps in usage in the process. Washington’s trio of Beal, Porzingis and Irving would certainly score a lot of points